Soccer world champion Steffi Jones: Emotional anger is okay.

28. February 2022 – Katharina Schlangenotto

Steffi Jones is one of the most famous German sportswomen. Born in 1972 in Frankfurt am Main, Steffi Jones was a soccer world champion, three-time European champion and national coach from September 2016 to March 2018.

“Be a good person and good things will happen to you,” was her mother’s motto in life. Steffi Jones still takes this to heart in everything she does.

Steffi Jones has influenced women’s soccer in Germany as a player and coach like no one else.

Her career started as a goalpost

Funnily enough, her career began as a goalpost. As a child, her brother, who was three years older than her, took her to the playing field to play soccer. She was four then. He set her up as one of the goalposts, the other being a jacket. When a ball flew toward her, she kicked it back, and her brother’s friends suggested she move from being a goal post to an equal teammate. It quickly became apparent that she had talent. The foundation for her soccer career was laid.

Steffi Jones is the daughter of an African-American father and a German mother, and she holds both a German and an American passport. Her dark skin color earned her numerous taunts and exclusion at school. She asked her mother if she could wash until she became as beautifully white as her mother. Her mother responded promptly, explaining to her that many people would pay money or go to a tanning bed to get that skin color.

Steffi Jones’ father left the family when she was four years old. Her mother brought the family through against all odds. For her, Steffi Jones cherishes a loving relationship full of gratitude and appreciation to this day.

Steffi Jones talks about motivation, team spirit and diversity

In addition to motivation and team spirit, she talks about diversity, integration and tolerance in her lectures. As a child, she says, it was incomprehensible to her why she was excluded because of the color of her skin. Back then, she didn’t know the word discrimination, even if she experienced it unconsciously.

Soccer was Steffi Jones’ anchor

Soccer and joining the club where she kicked with the boys freed her from her self-doubt. Because on the pitch, her looks or where she came from simply didn’t matter. Although she was a girl, she was recognized and could hold her own because she played so well. She is convinced that soccer teaches self-confidence, social skills and important values such as respect, tolerance and integration, which are also important off the pitch.

Today, Steffi Jones lives with her wife and their dogs near Gelsenkirchen, Germany, works in her wife’s IT company and is passionate about giving talks on diversity, integration and tolerance, on personality development through sports, on soccer topics, women in leadership positions, her own life story and strokes of fate, and how to succeed in dealing with life’s challenges.

Steffi Jones

World Champion, multiple European Champion - Expert Diversity, Integration, Leadership & Tolerance